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Christian and Socially-Conscious…One Woman's Expression

Archive for the tag “spiritual growth”

Wicked People

There was a time when I thought all people were good people.  Then I thought, some people were troubled.  Now I understand, there are those who are evil.  Sometimes, they wear sheep’s clothing.   Other times, they do not.  Beware!

duck-looking-around

This man [Jesus of Nazareth] was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.  —Acts 2:23

It was not easy for me to accept the notion that wicked people exist.  If in a group, I would be the one trying to understand why one person would intentionally hurt another, why one person would intentionally be cruel to another, why one person would intentionally break the spirit of another—particularly when the two profess the same faith as I.

“How could this be,” I would think.

Rest

Where is the love?

I would search to identify the why, not the wicked.  [You will know them by their fruit, I have come to rely upon.]  Truth is, some are wicked.  They are not crazy.  They are not demented.  They are not touchedThey are evil.  It is spiritual and as my spiritual awareness heightens, so does my respect for the spiritual realm.

Maturity has allowed me to accept people for who they are—not how they are with me.  There is always a spiritual conversation occuring, even when not conscious to us.  Because of this, I constantly pray for discernment.

Woman Praying

Do not be deceived:  Wicked people will work with you when you are working for their purpose.  Such agreement may not be obvious to you (immediately, if ever).  Know your helpmates and their spiritual significance.  It is a matter of life or death.

 

Who Do You See?

If Jesus was standing before you, would you recognize Him?  Songs have been written about this and sermons have been preached, but do you regularly consider this question?  As Christians, shouldn’t we?

Lady Pointing at Herself

At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. “Woman,” he said, “why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”  Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”  Jesus said, “Mary.”  She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher).  John 20:14-16

Do you believe that God sends people to you and you to people?  I do.  Of course, not everyone who cross my path I believe is of God, but when I am aware of its occurrence I pay special attention.

Kevin Hart It's About To Go Down

I can’t help but to think about all of the prophets God sent before He sent His Son.  I think about how so many people, particularly people professing to believe in God, did not recognize them.  As a result, they were opposed to the message the prophets brought and to the work they did.  The people countered the God they said they served.  Isn’t that interesting?  What a scary thought!

Girl with Arms Crossed

Have you ever wondered if you have acted in opposition to someone God has sent?  Have you ever been that person who was sent?  Do you think such resistance is because people, particularly fellow Christians, do not recognize God in the situation before them?  Do you think people have stopped believing that God sends people to do divine assignments outside of sanctuaries?  Do you think they ever believed?

Rest

Like Mary Magdalene, there are times when I do not expect to see God, so I may need to take a second look.  Titles and suits, smiles and charisma can be misleading.  Following trend can leave you watching Noah and his family sailing away.  I am growing more conscious, however, about identifying who is standing before me.  I am listening to hear the voice–His voice of which I will know.  What about you?

Invisible Allies

One of the lessons I learned during my campaign run was to appreciate invisible allies.  I laugh about it now, as I reflect upon my growth in this area.  Truth is, not everyone who support you will cheer for you publicly, and not everyone who cheer for you publicly will care for you privately.

Ghost Scene

Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus.  Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jews.  With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away.  He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night.  Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.  Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen.  This was in accordance to Jewish custom.  John 19: 38-40

Who cares for you, for your soul, when no one else is looking?  Who do you care for; who do you pray for; who do you call, text, or email to sincerely encourage when an audience is not around?  Do you hold it against people if you do not see their support?  To you, I share what I had to become conscious about and am still maturing in:

  • Do not lose focus on God or on your divine assignment;
  • He is working in you and He is working in others;
  • Know that He will provide for you, even in times when you do not see or understand; and
  • Remain open to receiving love from people, even after you have left the scene.

Invisible allies are not your enemy.  If revealed, don’t treat them as such!

 

You Are Hated

Do you concede the notion that you are hated?  Seriously, have you ever settled yourself enough to acknowledge that you are detested, and then to understand why?  Have you ever fought to emerge pass the hurt and pain, the shock and self-doubt to maturely and boldly stand in your creation?  Have you ever made such awareness not about you, finding comfort in He which you reflect?

Women Thinking

If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own.  As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world.  This is why the world hates you.  —John 15:19

In sanctuaries, we valiantly profess our love for Christ.  That is always easy to do in environments where we think we are the majority.  Would you be so loud if you knew you were surrounded by wolves in sheep clothing?  Are you as brave when you are in the world?  Spirits recognize spirits, even when one does not do so consciously, no matter the conditions.

Have you ever shown up somewhere and people become uncomfortable?  Your mere presence causes a shift in the atmosphere—sometimes it is pleasant and other times you know to be on heighten alert.   Do not be deceived in thinking such changes are because you are well-liked or disliked.  It is spiritual.  Are you amongst your Family or have you found yourself in the midst of the clan of another?  Know your truth!  Spirits do.

Friends

For me, it became vital to understand the spiritual nature of hate.  Sometimes it is easy to identify.  Other times, it will masquerade as a friend or ally.  However it appears, it is a formidable opponent.  Love and hate cannot share the same space contently.  There is no compromise.  Life lives!  Are you living according to your faith and His purpose?  Sure, there may be times when you feel as if you are all alone.  Know that you are not.  There will be times when you will feel outnumbered.  Remember, Light shines upon darkness.  Do not become distracted by hate.  You have a purpose founded in love.  You have work to do, a work much bigger than you.  You have been chosen to stand out, to not surrender to hate, envy, or jealousy.  So YES, you are hated!!!  You are hated because you are different from that which the world purports.  Now that that is understood, carry on.

Me 12.30.15 talking to group

All this I have told you so that you will not go astray.  —John 16:1

 

Book Review: Goals…Set Them!

BACKDROP

I knew I needed to get a particular book, but I had no idea where or what it was.  What an odd feeling—knowing you are being nudged to read a book, but not knowing its title.  A couple of weeks passed, but it would not go away.  I knew I needed to be obedient, so [finally] off to the bookstore I went with two conspicuous ideas in mind:

  • an athlete’s mind and
  • setting goals.

Getting out of my car, I did not know if I should first visit the Sports section, the Self Help section, or the Adult Fiction section.  Maybe the book is in the Non-Fiction section or the New Release section?  Books are everywhere.  I could see them walking to the entrance, but when I opened the door and stepped inside the strangest thing happened.  I was instructed to go to the Christian Life section.  Off I went to find what I was looking for.

REVIEW

This morning I finished the book entitled, The Circle Maker.  See:   https://www.amazon.com/Circle-Maker-Praying-Circles-Greatest/dp/0310330734   What a timely read!  It had been pressed upon my spirit that I needed to pray more, so much so that I had begun mentioning it to people.  I am blessed to be surrounded by people who hear my cry.  One friend got so excited when I said this and soon after I discovered why.  She gave me a movie to watch.  YES….She gave me War Room.  Clearly, God wants me to tighten up my prayer life.

Woman Praying

War Room was recently added to my Movies To Watch list, but I had not gotten around to viewing it.  [Can’t help but think that maybe that was by design too.]

The Circle Maker, inspired me to start a prayer journal, one that is devoted to prayer and goal setting.  Within a week I jotted down, what turned out to be, two answered prayers.  Now, I know that more than two prayers were answered during the week but these were two which resulted from specific prayers I prayed.

If you want to grow in your prayer life, I would highly recommend reading this book.  I liked it because it is not “preachy”, yet it gives tools which encourage you to PRAY BIGGER.  By the end, I knew I was not praying BIG enough.  [After all, God can do all things!]  The realization that I had not been praying BIG enough sadden me just a little.  More so, however, I was excited for my future because I knew I was about to make some changes.  Memories of past visions were triggered.  Images that God showed me in dreams and confirmations I received were surfacing.  I know now, however, that prayer is essential and praying with others is important.

Some people have the spiritual gift of intercession.  I am not aware that I am one of those people, so reading this book is a blessing and verification that the time has come to seriously focus on my assignment.  There is work to be done and settling is not an option.

I won’t share (all) the tools that Pastor Batterson gave as I would encourage you to buy and read the book, but when thinking about how the Holy Spirit led me to this book and ministered to me while reading it I cannot help but wonder if it was because of someone else’s circle.

Note:  This book makes a great group read.

Q & A

A woman asked me, “But how do you slay a spiritual snake?”
Immediately, I took note and said, “Now, THAT is a good question.”
I paused…then said, “With Truth.” I understand my response more now. 
sword

Christian Challenged

I keep returning to this verse:

Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed him.  But because of the Pharisees they would not confess their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved praise from men more than praise from God.  —John 12:42-43

and now I know why.

Boss

Have you ever felt a faith-rooted challenge?  Seriously, have you ever faced a circumstance when before doing something, or saying something, you knew your beliefs were being challenged?  Have you ever received too much change back from a cashier and pondered if you should return the surplus amount?  Have you ever heard a discriminatory joke and everyone around you laughed?  Has a supervisor ever asked you to forge numbers on a report?  Have you ever been tempted to gossip?  What did you do?  How does your response measure up when compared to what you say you believe?  Do you love praise from men more than you love praise from God?  More so, do you fear men more?  It’s ok.  Be honest with yourself.  The Christian…challenged.

Lady Pointing at Herself

As I type this, I know that I am being challenged to spiritually grow.  In time I will write more about that, but for now this is what I will say:  I was hurt.  I have been healed.  I must help.  To remain in my comfort zone would be selfish.  I know what is in me is meant to be shared.  Am I alone?  Are you letting hurt hinder you from reaching your full potential?  Has your naiveté about people affected your trust in God’s word?  You are not alone.  Many Christians are consciously opting to play it safe because of this manifestation of angst.  Fear has a funny way of containing people–Christian people–in that way.  Even leaders–YES, Christian leaders–are faced with this controlling agent.

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It is easy to get loss in the crowd’s mediocrity—to be silent when God is urging you to speak, to go along to get along, to be ordinary and deny the extraordinary creation of that which you are.  It is easy…until it isn’t.

Kevin Hart It's About To Go Down

As you evaluate your life ask yourself, “Am I being led by man or by God?”  This is an important question.  Everyone has an audience.  Someone, somewhere is always watching you–judging you—making observations about you.  Do they see the God who you say you believe or the man of whom you are afraid?

Dear Christian,

Rest

You have been challenged.

 

Who Do You Say I Am?

Today I did something sooooooo incredibly awesome as a result of accepting an invitation to be a Guest Messenger at a church.  Listen to the message I delivered earlier today.  No worries—it’s less than 18 minutes. (LOL!)  I hope it is a blessing to you!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YKJDy3sae4&feature=youtu.be

Conversational Focus

The older I become, the more I am realizing how I spend time and the conversations I am having with those whom I spend time.  It is an interesting awareness which I am finding, more and more, makes me conscious of my part in dialogues.  Let’s face it:  We, each of us, have a responsibility when communicating—as the listener and the talker.

Yeah, yeah, yeah….I know you’ve heard this before.  I had too, but recently I had an experience which reminded me that people will use you as their audience to justify their point of view and how easy it is to be that audience for them when you lose your conversational focus.

Brittney Spears Clapping

A second time they summoned the man who had been blind.  “Give glory to God,” they said.  “We know this man is a sinner.”  He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know.  One thing I do know.  I was blind but now I see!”  —John 9:24-25

People will see Truth in you.  They understand the value of your concurrence.  You better understand your worth—spiritually.  It has physical manifestations…and you better believe an audience that tunes in nonstop.

Women watching tv

  • A second time they summoned the man….”  Don’t sleep on this!  Just because you think a conversation is over does not mean that everyone has let it go.  Isn’t it funny how gossip seems to go on and on and on?  Truth will stop it every time though.  Don’t Get Caught Up
  • We know this man is a sinner.”  Note:  Words spoken with authority are not always words of certainty.  Truth is Truth.  It does not need a majority vote.
  • The man’s response, however, impressed within me an “Aha!”

Woman Standing On Rock

Here, I saw a perfect example of the application  of conversational focus.  In short, he was not persuaded by the excitement surrounding the discussion.  He was not influenced by the person speaking to him nor his entourage.  Fear was secondary.

Instead, this man did two things.  He listened and when he spoke, he spoke only Truth.  When you speak, do you only speak Truth?  Were you blind and now can see?

Are You A Well-Wisher?

Are you sick?  Really…are you?

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One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years.  When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”  —John 5:5-6

It is easy to admit when you are physically ill, isn’t it?  Feeling under the weather is a status society accepts and many times wishes of healing, prayers, and positive vibes quickly follow.  Taking medication, sipping tea, and getting plenty of rest are ready remedies to mend you to rejoin your peers in activities of life.  If only it were really THAT simple—are you sick?  Really…are you?  When was the last time you looked into your own eyes, into your own truth, to gauge your mental and spiritual well-being?  When was the last time you faced your fears and insecurities, your shortcomings and weaknesses, all of those things that hold you back from being the best YOU that you can be and asked yourself, “Do you want to get well?”  How long have you held yourself in bondage???  Seriously, do you want to get well?

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It seems like a lifetime ago now, but there was a time when I found myself totally exhausted.  Thankful I had not been in that condition for thirty-eight years, but I had been in it far too long.  The time had come for me to face my truth.  I stepped away from the distractions–from the parasitic noise I allowed to influence my life.  I surveyed my landscape, and was brutally honest about my condition.  Looking into my eyes I asked myself, “Do you want to get well?”  My answer would be life-changing.

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“YES,” my soul shouted!  Then, I cried… for two weeks.  Without my full comprehension, my cleansing had begun.  What I later realized was that with every tear I shed, a weight was being lifted.  I believe God was patiently waiting on me to get to the YES!  I needed to consciously want to get well.  THANK GOD I WANTED HEALING!

I could go on and on about the positive life-changes I have made which are a direct result of my decision to heal, and of the blessings these changes have brought.  It is all founded, however, on deepening my relationship with God and on trusting His promises.  I had compromised this focus before.  As a result, I became enervated.  Lesson learned!

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Are there things in your life, in yourself that you want healed?  Is it time for you to take a timeout—to get in a quiet place and have an honest conversation with God about your condition?  Do not sleep on YOU!  Do not sleep on HIM!  Do not get to the end of your life only to WAKE UP with a Should-a, Would-a, Could-a List.  Do you want better for your WHOLE life?  If so, do not become satisfied with simply being a get well-wisher!  God wants you healed!  Take action!  You have rested long enough!

 

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